Review Summary: "Another Mushroom Cloud, Another Smoking Gun"2 of 3 thought this review was well written
By 2007, Megadeth were truly back on form; they had their successful comeback 'The System Has Failed' released three years earlier and Dave Mustaine had started Gigantour, one of the most popular metal tours. This meant 'United Abominations' had to live up to a lot of hype. Did it succeed? Of course it did; there weren't going to be any drastic changes in sound and Megadeth were building up momentum which eventually led to the amazing 'Endgame', showing that Megadeth were just as relevant as they were when they made 'Countdown To Extinction'. Things were also helped by the new producer, Andy Sneap, who is undeniably one of the best modern metal producers and the fact that instead of having session musicians play on the album, there were full-time members (Glen and Shawn Drover and James LoMenzo), making for a more “complete” sounding album than 'The System Has Failed'.
It is also more consistent than the previous album, as there are no needless interludes (like 'I Know Jack') or long sections where the album drags (like most of the previous album's second half). The only parts which I could really complain about were the out-of-place ranting on 'Amerikhastan' (the weakest link on the album) and the re-recorded version of 'A Tout Le Monde'; it doesn't fit with the generally political nature of the album and it gives the impression that they couldn't come up with something new to put on the album (despite 'Black Swan' being a much better song but just being a bonus track). Apart from that, 'United Abominations' is very enjoyable.
If I had to pick a favourite song from this album, it'd probably be the UN-bashing title track due to the aggressive yet sincere lyrics, the forceful riffs and, of course, the amazing lead guitar work. These attributes could be applied to many of the songs, such as 'Washington Is Next!' or 'Never Walk Alone... A Call To Arms', though, so there doesn't appear to be a clear winner here. The album is filled with great moments, so it would be quite difficult to put one song above the rest, which only emphasises the consistency of 'United Abominations' (apart from 'Amerikhastan' and the re-recording of 'A Tout Le Monde').
In conclusion, 'United Abominations' solidifies the fact that Megadeth have returned! The album may be overshadowed by the following release, 'Endgame' in both quality and popularity, but that doesn't mean that this and 'The System Has Failed' should be forgotten about, as they are both worthy additions to the Megadeth discography.